Isaiah 56: 1, 5-6
Thus says the Lord:
Observe what is right, do what is just;
for my salvation is about to come,
my justice, about to be revealed.
The foreigners who join themselves to the Lord,
ministering to him,
loving the name of the Lord,
and becoming his servants—
all who keep the sabbath free from profanation
and hold to my covenant,
them I will bring to my holy mountain
and make joyful in my house of prayer;
their burnt offerings and sacrifices
will be acceptable on my altar,
for my house shall be called
a house of prayer for all peoples.
Romans 11:13-15, 29-32
Brothers and sisters:
I am speaking to you Gentiles.
Inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles,
I glory in my ministry in order to make my race jealous
and thus save some of them.
For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world,
what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?
For the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.
Just as you once disobeyed God
but have now received mercy because of their disobedience,
so they have now disobeyed in order that,
by virtue of the mercy shown to you,
they too may now receive mercy.
For God delivered all to disobedience,
that he might have mercy upon all.
Can today’s readings from both the Old and New Testaments be any clearer that God is not a tribal deity of just the self-described “chosen people”?
Recall that the first people to see Jesus were Gentiles — the magi — who were also the first Gentiles to receive His salvific grace. As recounted in Matthew 2:12:
“And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their country by another way.”
Jesus came for all of us, Jew and Gentile, no matter our race, country, gender, language, or creed — all who are not so much chosen as choose. In Christ’s own words, they are “whoever believes in me,” “do the works that I do,” who love Him by keeping His commandments (John 14:12, 15), and who “deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me” (Luke 9:23).
As St. Paul makes clear about Jesus’ mission: “He is mediator of a new covenant” (Hebrews 9:15) and “In speaking of a new covenant, He makes the first one obsolete” (Hebrews 8:13).
And for that, they publicly humiliated, tortured and crucified Him.
“Whoever hates me also hates my Father.” –John 15:23
The least we can do is to tell Him we love him with our whole heart, our whole soul, our whole mind, and with every ounce of our whole strength.
May the peace and love and strength of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you this glorious Sunday morning, despite our country’s descent into engineered chaos,